Sit back and relax as you journey through the breath-taking scenery of the Canadian West, aboard the legendary Rocky Mountaineer train tour. With different packages and routes to choose from, you can enjoy an experience of British Columbia and Alberta unlike any other.
Soak up your incredible surroundings and discover the route’s fascinating history as you travel the same journey that was opened a hundred years ago for trade, allowing people to pass freely through the rugged terrain for the first time. For the best way to immerse yourself in the Canadian Rockies – a UNESCO World Heritage Site of spectacular beauty – we’d choose a Rocky Mountaineer train holiday every time.
A little bit of history…
A trip on a Rocky Mountaineer train takes you past monumental landmarks from the first days of the National Railway. The 1885 Canadian Pacific Railway changed history by connecting British Columbia with Canada. From the bitter rivalry for the lucrative construction contract through to the dangerous building work migrant labourers endured, the Railway has a rich and colourful history. Ultimately it played an important role facilitating communications, transportation, trade and tourism, and helping the development of the nation.
With all that in mind, history buffs will want to see the site of the last “spike” on Canada’s first transcontinental railway line. Today, the Rocky Mountaineer is the only train tour operator that still uses this fantastic historic route and offers that opporunity. If you want to catch a glimpse of the Kicking Horse River, glide through the Spiral Tunnels and traverse the Continental Divide, the Rocky Mountaineer’s exclusive and aptly named tour of this First Passage to the West is the one for you.
Rocky Mountaineer Train Routes
With so many exciting itineraries to choose from, there’s no excuse not to add a Rocky Mountaineer tour onto your trip to Western Canada! If the award winning service and allure of luxury aren’t enough to tempt you, travelling by train is also a fantastic opportunity to spot some of Canada’s best wildlife. Keep your eyes peeled for bears, bald eagles and ospreys in their natural habitats along the way.
Here are the Rocky Mountaineer’s four different routes, which run in both directions:
The First Passage to the West
Vancouver – Kamloops – Lake Louise – Banff
For unparalleled scenerery with a healthy dose of history, choose the legendary First Passage to the West. This two-day, all-daylight trip makes sure you have time to soak up the incredible sights on route between Banff and Vancouver. Look out for Fraser Valley, Rogers Pass, Kicking Horse Canyon and the Spiral Tunnels. You’ll pass Castle Mountain, beautiful Lake Louise, the historical Stoney Creek Bridge site and a number of breath-taking canyons.
Journey Through the Clouds
Vancouver – Kamloops – Jasper
The Journey through the Clouds is considered to be the most scenic route in Canada. Two full days of travel and an overnight stop ensure you won’t miss a thing. Spot Mount Robson – the highest peak in the Rockies – as you travel by the Monashee and Cariboo Mountains Valleys. Pass the Pyramid Falls, climb over Yellowhead Pass and journey along the North Thompson River as the train approaches Kamloops. In the final leg of the journey, you’ll see the scenery change dramatically from desert-like landscapes through to lush forests, ending in the Fraser Canyon.
Rainforest to Gold Rush
Vancouver – Whistler – Quesnel – Jasper
Try the Classic Rail Circle holiday – travel on this magnificent route through the Rocky Mountains as you journey through the towns of Jasper and Quesnel, which is also known as the ‘Gold Pan City’. The scenery will change before your eyes from majestic prairies to towering spruce trees. Don’t miss the opportunity to try some of the local cuisine while you’re there!
Our favourite tours which include the Rainforest to Gold Rush route are:
• Classic Rail Circle
• Rainforest to Gold Rush Grand Adventure Calgary II
Choosing your Rocky Mountaineer ticket
As well as a choice of routes, you have a choice of two service levels to suit your holiday budget. Each one offers a luxurious and comfortable journey with delicious food and drink, so whichever ticket you go for, you won’t be disappointed.
GoldLeaf represents the highest level of service, so if you’re looking for unparalled comfort on board your Rocky Mountaineer trip, choose this. The esteemed GoldLeaf ticket lets you travel in 360 degree glass-domed carriages with spectacular panoramic views. Your journey also includes access to a large outdoor viewing area, a gourmet á la carte menu served in the train’s stylish dining room and complimentary alcoholic drinks for the duration of your journey.
Choose SilverLeaf service and travel in style in a single-level domed carriage with oversized windows to enhance your view. For the full panoramic effect, there is an outdoor viewing area between coaches. You’ll also receive a choice of hot lunch options, a continental breakfast and complimentary alcoholic drinks throughout your journey.
Compare the two fantastic services to see what an upgrade to GoldLeaf offers:
|A single-level dome coach with panoramic views through oversized windows||Unparalleled panoramic views from full-length, dome windows|
|Welcome aboard toast||Welcome aboard toast|
|Delicious hot, gourmet breakfast and lunch options, served by a culinary team member at your seat||Delicious hot, gourmet breakfast and lunches from an a la carte menu, served in the lower-level dining room|
|Complimentary alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages and gourmet snacks available throughout the journey||Complimentary alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages and gourmet snacks available throughout the journey, including beer and wine with lunch|
|Captivating stories, tales and historic trivia told by your Rocky Mountaineer hosts||Captivating stories, tales and historic trivia told by your Rocky Mountaineer hosts|
|Complimentary baggage delivery to your overnight hotel accommodation in Whistler, Kamloops and Quesnel||Complimentary baggage delivery to your overnight hotel accommodation in Whistler, Kamloops and Quesnel|
|Complimentary transfers to and from the train during your vacation package||Complimentary transfers to and from the train during your vacation package|
|Outdoor viewing between coaches||Access to outdoor vestibule for close encounters with nature|
|Spacious reclining dome-level seats that rotate to accommodate up to groups of four|
|Temperature controlled comfort|
How we can help
A two-day train journey through the Rockies can enhance any holiday in Western Canada. Or come for the Rocky Mountaineer tour in its own right and add on days and trips unique to you in the most interesting towns on route. The choice is yours. Whatever you decide to do on your holiday to Canada, Canadian Affair can offer help and advice on where to go and what to do. Contact one of our experts for more information and a bespoke package.